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Welsh Minister visits proton beam therapy centre in Newport

L-R: Rutherford Lead Therapy Radiographer Kate Evans, CEO of Rutherford Health Mike Moran and UK Government in Wales Minister and MP for Monmouth David TC Davies

UK Government in Wales Minister and MP for Monmouth, David TC Davies, visited the Rutherford Cancer Centre South Wales in Newport this week to show support and highlight the contribution independent cancer centres can make in light of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Rutherford Cancer Centre South Wales was the first cancer facility to bring proton beam therapy to the UK in 2018 and now offers the pioneering treatment to adult NHS Wales patients, making Welsh patients the first to be offered proton beam therapy on the NHS in the UK.

The centre also remained open throughout the pandemic and assisted local NHS Trusts by treating cancer patients who would have otherwise had their treatments delayed or cancelled by the effects of the lockdown.

David TC Davies MP was welcomed at the centre by CEO of Rutherford Health Mike Moran and Centre Manager Jamie Powell, and was given a full tour of the facility which included the 55-ton cyclotron used for the proton beam therapy machine.

UK Government in Wales Minister David TC Davies MP stated: “Rutherford is a leading example of a firm which is harnessing the expertise which exists in the UK to deliver transformational improvements to cancer treatments and the lives of patients.

“The UK Government is clear that we want the UK to be a world leader in the science and research that will drive both economic growth and societal benefits for decades to come.”

Mike Moran said: “We are delighted to welcome the Minister to our state of the art centre which has been central to the transformation of UK cancer care. Our Welsh centre, which had the support of the Welsh government from the very beginning, has now grown into a network of four centres across the UK providing the latest and most advanced diagnostic and cancer treatments.

“Early testing and diagnosis is pivotal to achieving good health outcomes in cancer care. Rutherford Health has been at the forefront of pushing for early diagnosis to give patients the highest chances of treatment success. The UK government urged NHS Trusts across the country to utilise independent sector capacity to deal with cancer delays and our centres have risen to the challenge.”

Rutherford Health’s network of cancer centres in Wales, Reading, Northumberland and Liverpool remain operational with strict measures in place to ensure all centres are Covid-free zones. The centres will continue to assist NHS Trusts with delays in cancer treatment in an attempt to address the cancer backlog.